Communicating the Mystery of Dark Energy

Last night (30th March 2016) the flagship BBC documentary show, Horizon, had a programme on dark energy: that mysterious “thing” that is causing the expansion of the Universe to accelerate, and which accounts for approximately 70% of the mass-enemy content of the Universe.

Here at MSSL we were very fortunate to have some of our astronomy staff interviewed for the programme thanks to our involvement in the Euclid mission, a satellite designed to determine the nature of dark energy due to be launched in 2020. At MSSL we are building the visible camera for Euclid, and help to lead the weak lensing science for this mission in collaboration with our colleagues from around the world.

This Horizon programme came about as result of Tom Kitching’s Royal Society BBC secondment in 2015. Filming took place at the lab in July 2015 and featured Mark Cropper and Paniez Paykari from MSSL. Below is a behind-the-scenes picture of some of the filming.


Horizon on BBC two has done a fantastic job on “The Mystery of Dark Energy”, explaining how it came about, its discovery in 1998 and its current status. It was aired last night at 8pm on BBC two.  If you missed it, it is on iPlayer and you can find it here:




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